$2.2 Million Awarded to Berks County Farms

Photo provided by Berks County Conservation District.

Agricultural Best Management Practice (BMP) Implementation in the Chesapeake Bay

The Berks County Conservation District (BCCD) is excited to announce good news is on the way for Berks County farmers in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Last week, the Natural Resource Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS) awarded more than $200 million for the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), including $2,232,143.00 toward Berks County agricultural operations within the Chesapeake Bay to implement agricultural best management practices (BMP’s.) RCPP is a partner-driven approach to conservation that funds solutions to natural resource challenges on agricultural land. By leveraging collective resources and collaborating on common goals, RCPP demonstrates the power of public-private partnerships in delivering results for agriculture and conservation.

BCCD will be the lead partner for the Chesapeake Bay RCPP project. Collectively, RCPP partners have also committed an additional $2,294,875.00 in contributions, totaling over $4.5 million toward the implementation of agricultural BMP’s to improve and protect local water quality. In collaboration with the USDA-NRCS, BCCD and project partners will implement Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plans (CNMPs) or a “Whole Farm Approach.” This includes implementing manure handling systems, animal heavy use area protection, and near-stream conservation practices such as riparian buffers, filter strips, and animal exclusion fencing, all while providing much needed technical assistance and conservation planning.

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